Usually, a great recipe comes your way by total accident. And, that’s exactly how my ravioli di patate (potato ravioli) came to be.
How These Potato Ravioli Were Born
I love repurposing. I feel it’s my purpose in life, to make sure everything in my fridge and pantry becomes something delicious. So, as I was driving home, I remembered I still had leftover pasta dough and I really needed to do something about it.
Going to the store seemed nauseating. I could only imagine myself trying to pick out the right filling ingredients at 7 pm, looking for a spark of creativity in the lackluster cheese section of my local store. Don’t get me wrong – I fully believe you can find something out of nearly nothing. But, I’d rather be searching in my fridge than desperately in a store.
ANYWAYS, I went home and realized I bought a ridiculous amount of Yukon gold potatoes in hopes of making gnocchi. Then, my brain went ‘WAIT A MINUTE – TORTELLI DI PATATE ARE ABSOLUTELY DELICIOUS!’ These are classic ravioli from Tuscany, generously filled with potato, and tossed in ragù. These hearty ravioli are also known as tortelli mugellani, named after their birthplace of Mugello, a valley just north of Florence.
I didn’t have the ingredients or time to make ragù. But, I did have the potato, parm, and butter I needed to make a mean potato filling and buttery sauce.
The result – potato ravioli in a lemony brown butter sage sauce. It is so simple and delicious. I couldn’t tell if I was eating mashed potatoes or pasta. Really, I was eating both!
Now, for this recipe, I used only half of my pasta dough (a recipe you can find here.) But, I highly suggest you use all your pasta dough for this because these ravioli are just too addictive!
Another thing is – you can really make these ravioli any shape or size you like. I experimented, first making them quite large like the delicious ricotta di bufala ravioli I had in Roma years ago. Then, I made them more modestly sized, like the Tuscan ravioli di patate. Both were equally delicious. It mostly depends on how you’d like your plate to look. Just make sure that if you make your potato ravioli larger, they need a minute or two more to cook.
What to Pair with Potato Ravioli
You can go red, white, or sparkling with these babies. A younger Sangiovese is a brilliant pair, like the Monte Bernardi 2019 Retromarcia Chianti Classico, as its freshness and acidity are the perfect matches for all the buttery, zesty goodness in this dish. You can also go for a dry Lambrusco or even a brut/extra-brut Champagne.
Let’s get down to this recipe!
Potato Ravioli in Lemon Sage Brown Butter Recipe
Serves 2 people (or, if you are able to resist another plate of ravioli, 3-4 people)
- Half of fresh pasta dough
- 4 small-medium sized Yukon potatoes
- 1 egg
- 1/4 cup of grated parmigiano reggiano (or use as much parm to taste!)
- a couple of splashes of vegetable or chicken broth
- a good knob of butter (about 2 tablespoons)
- grated nutmeg (to taste*)
- About 3-4 cracks of black pepper (to taste)
- Pinch of salt (to taste)
For the sauce:
- 3 tablespoons of butter
- 1 glug of EVOO
- 4 sage leaves
- Zest of half a lemon
- Juice of half a lemon
*This is optional as not everyone has nutmeg. I didn’t use it the first time I made this recipe and it all came out beautifully. I think the chicken broth addition helps boost the flavor.
- Prep your fresh pasta dough
- As your dough rests, make your filling. Peel and dice your potatoes (smaller the size, the easier to mash!) Place them in a pot of water, letting the potatoes rest in the water as it reaches boiling.
- Once the potatoes are tender, drain them and add them into a bowl. Mash them vigorously with a masher or fork. Begin adding in your butter and parm.
- Then, slowly add in your chicken broth. You want your potato filling to have a luscious, creamy consistency, like mashed potatoes.
- Now, add in your nutmeg, black pepper, and salt to taste.
- Make a well in the middle of your potato filling. Crack your egg into it and whisk it. Once whisked, incorporate it into your mixture. Put your potato filling aside.
NOW FOR THE RAVIOLI MAKING!
- Cut your pasta dough in half. Then, cut one half into half (so, 2 quarters.) If you have nonna skills and are using a mattarello (or giant rolling pin,) you can skip this step.
- Using a pasta machine, roll out one-quarter of dough to the thinnest level (which is usually 9.) Make sure when you finish rolling out your dough, you do NOT flour the top of it. You should flour the underside, though.
- With your long pasta sheet laid out, begin adding scoops of potato filling along one side of the pasta sheet. The scoop size will reflect how much room you need between the dough. For a golf ball-sized scoop, leave at least an inch between the scoops.
- As you scoop, make sure you leave enough room between the filling and the edge of the pasta dough. The goal is to fold over the pasta dough so that you can make your ravioli. This way, you can seal your ravioli safely.
- Once your filling is all lined on the pasta dough, fold the other side of the pasta dough over the filling. Then, seal each ravioli with your fingers or a fork. Make sure there are no holes!
- With a pasta cutter or very sharp knife, cut your ravioli individually. Sprinkle each with a bit of flour to make sure they do not stick to whatever surface you may be moving them to.
- Startup your salted water. As it comes to a boil, start your sauce. Toss your butter into a pan, allowing it to melt slowly over low-medium heat.
- As your butter begins to bubble, add in your lemon and lemon zest. Then, toss in your sage leaves.
- Once your butter is brown and smells toasty (NOT BURNT!,) turn off the heat and remove the pan from the burner.
- When the water is boiling, toss in your ravioli. Usually, these ravioli need about 3.5 minutes. If they’re larger (like mine pictured) I’d give them an extra minute.
- When ready, move your pan back to the still-warm burner and add ravioli into your pan. Toss them into the sauce.
- Serve them with a little sage leaf on top, and additional parmigiano if you’re feeling extra cheesy.